Milwaukee Talks: MLB.com Brewers beat reporter Adam McCalvy
Podcast: MLB.com's Adam McCalvy talk about the best and worst Brewers interviews
Subscribe to OnMilwaukee.com Podcasts
OMC: Did you have to tone down your loyalties to the home team? I assume you grew up as a Brewers fan, and you worked for them.
AM: Yeah. If you're too much of a fan of the team, it affects your work, and I don't think that's right. Everyone in sports journalism goes through this, because you would've never entered the business if you weren't first a sports fan. I did grow up as a big Brewers fan. I was in the Pepsi Fan Club. In college, I'd go to three or four games a week and sit in left field with my buddies.
OMC: Do you miss that you can't sit in the bleachers anymore?
AM: I try to go one game a year as a fan. Whether it's a big group and we're tailgating, or it's just two or three people, I think it's important every now and then to go as a fan, drink a beer and remember why I did this in the first place. This sounds so stupid, I know, but it's a grind. It's long days. It's eight hours of your head down on your computer, writing.
OMC: How do you deal with the burnout? When I see you during spring training, I try to cajole you into going out at night, but you always look exhausted.
AM: You do miss everybody's birthday and Fourth of July cookouts, but that's just part of the gig. I get through it by sitting back every week or so and saying I have the best job ever. There are about 10,000 people who would be in line behind me if I decided that this isn't what I want to do. I really do enjoy my job. I enjoy the small market, and I can get to know these (players) in a different way than if I were covering baseball in Boston or New York.
OMC: I know reporters used to go out with the players when they were on the road. Does that kind of stuff still happen?
AM: I don't think that it does. There's a line now that exists that didn't exist before. We don't travel with the team, we're flying commercial like everyone else. Part of what the Internet has given me -- in addition to a job and a career -- it has created more of a barrier with the players. The players are worried about having their pictures show up on Deadspin. It makes them more guarded than they were 30 years ago. There are still the beat writers, but now there are television reporters, radio reporters, bloggers and people with cell phone cameras.
OMC: So you don't hang out with any of the players?
AM: I don't, because it would make me uncomfortable. There are players that I'll hang out and talk to during batting practice. I've known J.J. Hardy since he was drafted, the same year I was working with the team. I was doing a weekly diary with him down in A-ball. There are guys who I'm friendly with, but my friends are outside of baseball.
OMC: What's your sports media consumption like?
AM: I read the blogs. Maybe I'm a little different than the old-school beat guys, who didn't read them. Like they thought bloggers were in their grandmothers' basements. I've never felt that way. I feel like I have a good relationship with them, and I get good ideas from them all the time. If you have an air of superiority, then you're in the wrong business. I'll take whatever input, criticisms and compliments I can get. There are some die-hard fans who know as much about baseball as anyone.
OMC: Do you ever get recognized outside the press box?
AM: No, and that's just fine with me. I'd rather stay in the background and cover the games. Anyone wants to get positive feedback, and I appreciate when I do. But I like criticism, too. The Internet gives people an opportunity to know when you screw up, and they certainly do.
<< BackPage 2 of 2 (view all on one page)
Downtowner | June 8, 2009 at 11:47 a.m. (report)
Good stuff. I do think "the future" of sports media will really feature two areas: 1) funded coverage by the leagues (like MLB.com, NBATV, etc.) and 2) direct, straight to the fans content from players, owners, agents, etc. It's a balance, though. Sports media consumption is crazy and the more content, the better. But, like everything, the cream rises to the top. Online is it for sure.
3 comments about this article.
Post a comment / write a review.
Disclaimer: Please note that Facebook comments are posted through Facebook and cannot be approved, edited or declined by OnMilwaukee.com. The opinions expressed in Facebook comments do not necessarily reflect those of OnMilwaukee.com or its staff.